Day #300 – Life Aboard a Boat, Part 1

This is a momentous occasion—300 days on the trail, the waterway trail that is! I find this hard to believe unless I look at my journal or calendar and see verification for myself. 300 days, 4848 miles, 16 states + Canada, and too many waterways to mention. What a whirlwind experience (wild ride) we have had throughout the entire 300 days! Still seems impossible to believe that we are ¾ done with the trip. In some ways, it feels as though we have just begun, and in other ways, it feels like we’ve lived aboard Sanctuary for much longer.        

I am working on a job description for First Mate. Requirements needed for this position is quite extensive so it may be awhile before the list is complete. Here are a few points to consider:

  • Strong physical endurance most helpful. Ability to withstand sweltering heat and humidity, pelting rain, storms and cool temperatures. May occur within the same day. A strong internal constitution when encounter foreign water and foods. Ability to walk a lot, coordination in riding a bicycle, climbing in and out of a dinghy, and stepping many steps, tying knots, lassoing cleats/posts/rings in anticipation of docking
  • Excellent balance and no fear of the water or motion sickness prone—a definite plus!
  • Ability to tolerate long periods without family or friends you left behind. The flip side: you will meet many wonderful people along the way who share your trip with you off and on during  the 6000+ miles.
  • Days of isolation in tight quarters; other days you’ll be overwhelmed by people everywhere with no where to retreat.
  • Every day is different for approximately the next 365 days. No two days are the same even if you remain in the same anchorage, marina, or mooring ball.

Let’s pause for a moment.

  • Is God showing you a new door to open in your life today? Maybe an adventure in the making.
  • What do you suppose He is preparing you to encounter or withstand in the near future? Be brave and ask Him.

In Part 2, we will consider useful skills to carry along for the trip ahead.

xxxxx

 

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Turbulent forecast ahead?

Dark, ominous sky overhead         
Warns of rain and inclement weather.
Tempest clouds
Speak of turbulent forecast.
Yet, we are docked safe and secure
Naught to worry or fear.

Even though outside the
Weather is frightful, I know
He has this whole world in His hands.
Deep within my soul
I can truly say,
It is well with my soul.      

 

 

 

 

The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit, John 3:8.

*****

 

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Breathing in His Grace

Swan Creek anchorage by Rock Hall, Maryland

All is calm.
All is still.                                             Fish jump occasionally.
Blue Heron glides overhead.
Subtle creek ripples
Gently past our vessel
Sanctuary – tucked away snugly
Within a protected cove.

Take a few deep breaths
Breathe in His grace and 
Breathe out His praise  *
Breeze cooling as sun sets
Slowly behind pine tree line.
Another day draws to a close
Opportunity to thank the One
Who made all things possible.

Picture taken at Swan Creek at anchor, Rock Hall Maryland

  • Matt Redman – Your Grace Finds Me! 
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Sacrifice for You and for Me

Thoughts while sitting on the Amphitheater steps of the Unknown Soldier Tomb:

Oh, the tears, the blood shed
Represented here in this place.      
Row after Row after Row
White tombstones
Representing sons, fathers, uncles.
Real live people.
Real live losses.

Days gone by.
Ancestors, family, friends.
What sacrifices!
All to secure my freedom and yours.
Words cannot describe
The debt we owe
To the many who’ve gone on before.

I am humbled, speechless
Driven to my knees.
My only response
Is Thank You.
And then the tears flow.

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Come to Me

Come To Me                     

Are you weary?
Burdened beyond words?
Rest is found in Him.
In Him alone.
Freely, generously without question.

I can learn from Him.
He is my Teacher; I am the student;
ever learning,
ever failing,
then ever learning some more.

He is gentle,
humble in heart.
Sweet, blessed, essential
Rest is found in Him.
He can satisfy my longing soul
and fill an empty heart.

thoughts taken from Matthew 11:28-29

*****

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There’s No Place Like Home

There’s No Place Like Home                                                                                                                  

Spring sprung while we were away.                       Red Dogwood at Home
Jonquils pop tiny yellow & white heads.
Trillium burst forth in uniform whites.
Purplish buds appear from Red Bud tree.
Pink-red colored Dogwood blossoms
Surge out alive and well.

To think I would have missed
This grand display
Had I not traveled this way!
Iris whites shoot forth.
Leafy rose leaves waking up.
Assorted green tree buds say hello.
Grass blades stand tall & proud.

I’m so thankful for this chance     Trillum at Home
To re-acquaint myself with
My blessings I oft
Forget amidst day-to-day routine.

All shout Happy Spring
Glad you are here now!

Daffodils at Home

Iris at home

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Water Therapy

beach at Wrightsville Beach Atlantic

Atlantic Ocean – Wrightsville Beach

Ocean waves thunder & roll
Crashing unrepentant against the shore
Greenish-blue water with froth on top
Wind blasts sand on my skin
Children chase seagulls
Birds hover overhead
Carried along with the breeze
People play … enjoying life
Others rest after a hectic week
Some immersed in their favorite read
Carefree feeling
Place to unwind
Absorb sun’s rays
To just be!

I stoop low
Spying a smooth peculiar shell
Purple hued edges
Catch my eye
I gather grains of polished sand
As they trickle past my fingertips

Praying
May the wind smooth and polish
My rough and jagged edges
May I be beautiful and useful
In Your sight
For Your glory!

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Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss! We celebrate his birthday this month. Think about the poem below; I absolutely love it:

Today
You are
You,
that is truer than true.
There is
No One
alive who is youer than
You!

by Dr. Seuss

*****

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He sees all

God sees a lonely, breaking heart
So, He sends rays of sunshine to warm a soul
An unexpected smile from a stranger
Manatee swims beneath the boat 

God sees a lonely, breaking heart
So, He delivers frolicking dolphins
Comfort words from a friend
Bursts of flowers from a cactus

God sees my lonely, breaking heart
So, He orchestrates morning chatter from birds
Awareness … my husband truly cares
A pelican confidently swoops

I am not alone
This too shall pass
Reminders to enjoy
this present moment

*****

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I’m Back !!!

Greetings & Salutations!

Been so long busy preparing and traveling on our year-long Great Loop journey that I am sorry I’ve neglected this blog. In the interim, I hope you’ll find, read, comment on our blog link at www.TravelsOfSanctuary.com. Our blog will give you a clue as to what my husband Steve and I have been doing for the last six months.

Steve & Teresa on the deck of Sanctuary

Steve & Teresa on the deck of Sanctuary

This is day #179 of a potential 365-day trip. Doing the math, I calculate that 182 days will be one-half way through. I can honestly say I am not the same person when Steve and I began on September 3, 2016 back at Lakeshore Yacht Harbour, Muskegon, Michigan.

I’ve been honest with everyone—we are living aboard my dream boat on Steve’s dream trip. We’ve weathered ups and downs. In case you wonder if every day feels like living in Paradise; the answer is no. Many are wonderful and we see beautiful sights such as sunsets, manatees, and Key deer.  I can move my body geographically to a warm location, but with the body also comes my mind and soul. All my previous deficiencies and hang ups come along with me. My fears, doubts, worry (I know that I am not supposed to worry), probably even multiplied—they did not automatically magically disappear (wouldn’t that have been sweet?)

Circumstances of life and known people stayed behind for a time. New circumstances, geography, people took their place while on this year long journey. I’m thankful for stay-over visitors we have from time to time.  My main source of communication, interaction needs to be found in my husband of 40 years. Other Looper boaters and my surroundings change constantly and sometimes daily. Lately, the mantra I repeat is:

I cannot do this, Lord! I cannot do this without You!

Depending on the day, I may be referring to:

  • Being stranded on the boat for a few days and nights without leaving while rocking and rolling in a storm trying to remain brave and not get seasick
  • Washing another dirty dish by hand
  • High temperatures and humidity feeling ready to pass out
  • Not seeing my children/grandchildren/friends for months at time
  • Lack of exercise aboard due to not much square footage and no car to take me away. We rely predominately on our own two feet or bicycles

I constantly remind myself that He is my all in all. The great I AM. Learning to lean into Him as I combat impatience, loneliness, frustration, anger, and physical limitations. God gives me the choice and will to praise His name and be thankful for my many blessings of which there are many if I look around me. God is still in control.

How do you handle loneliness? Frustration and anger? Have you been in a situation where you are at the end of your resources and had to call out to God in desperation? Maybe you are there right now. I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to leave a comment or question. We can both grow together spiritually.

Blessings to you & your family, Teresa

I leave you with a few choice words from Colossians 3:15, Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.

*****

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